101 Seminars

What is History 101?

The History 101 seminar is designed to guide you through the capstone experience of your undergraduate education as a history major: the researching and writing of your senior thesis. Successful completion of this challenging but rewarding endeavor requires you to do the work of a historian. Ultimately, this translates to producing a piece of scholarship—in this case, a 25-30 page final paper—in which you articulate and defend a historical interpretation/argument rooted in extensive primary source research, informed by thorough secondary source reading. See preparation guidelines below. Click on "Senior Thesis" to the right for full instructions on the History senior thesis. 


Spring 2022 Registration

If you would like to take History 101 this spring, for the best chance at your first choice of seminar please fill out this online form by 9am on Monday 10/18: History 101 Registration Form

PLEASE NOTE: Make sure you're logged into your Berkeley.edu account to access this form.

Please indicate your top three choices, and include a short explanation of why your top choice makes the most sense to you. If you have a serious scheduling issue, please mention it. We really want to be certain that every 101 student is in the best possible section. If you miss the deadline, please email Leah when you realize you have missed it. You will still have a spot in a 101, just possibly not your first choice.

We will place you into your 101 section the week fo Oct 18th. You will not be able to enroll in the class yourself. When you are added we will attempt to override your units, and any time conflict, but please be aware that you need to resolve any real time conflicts that exist. 101 classes may not meet at every scheduled session, but you must be available at these posted times.

Spring 2022 Course Descriptions

Here are the instructors, schedules, and descriptions for the Fall 2021 101 courses. 

101 002: East Asia Topics

Instructor: James Stone Lunde 
Class #26765
Monday Wednesday 3–5pm

East Asian history.


101 103: Ancient and Medieval Topics  

Instructor: Carlos Noreña
Class #26766
Monday/Wednesday 2–4pm
Dwinelle 2303

Ancient Greek and Roman history, medieval history.

101 005: Late Modern Europe Topics

Instructor: Vanessa Ogle 
Class #26768
Tuesday/Thursday 9–11am
Dwinelle 2303

Economic history, European international history (League of Nations, Humanitarianism), history of imperialism and colonialism, decolonization, political history, European integration.


101 006: Late Modern Europe Topics

Instructor: Isabel Richter 
Class #26769
Tuesday/Thursday 11am–1pm
Dwinelle 3104

European cultural history between the late 18th and the 20th centuries.


101 007: Latin America and the Caribbean & U.S. Topics

Instructor: Bernadette Perez
Class #26770
Tuesday/Thursday Noon–2pm
Dwinelle 3205

Transnational or comparative examinations of Latin America in the world, histories of race, ethnicity, indigeneity, migration, colonialism, capitalism, labor, the environment, and social movements.


101 008: U.S. Topics

Instructor: Brian DeLay 
Class #29680
Tuesday Thursday 1–3pm
Dwinelle 3104

Colonial North America or U.S. topics through the Civil War, U.S.-Mexican borderlands topics.



101 009 U.S. Topics

Instructor: Sandra Eder 
Class #29807
Tuesday Thursday Noon–2pm
Dwnelle 2303

Gender and sexuality, medicine and science, 20th century.



101 110: U.S. Topics

Instructor: Stephanie Jones-Rogers 
Class #32865
Tuesday Thursday 2–4pm
Dwinelle 2303

The History of Race, Gender, and Sexuality in America.


101 111: U.S. Topics

Instructor: Daniel Kelly
Class #32866
Tuesday Thursday 3–5pm
Dwinelle 3104

US intellectual history and 20th Century America.


Preparation Guidelines

  1. Identify/describe a topic you would like to investigate for your 101 (thesis). Your topic should be narrowly focused, something that you can examine thoroughly, rather than superficially. As a general rule, it is always better to cast your research net deep instead of wide, to cover less in order to uncover more. Your initial topic description should be informed by a preliminary investigation into both primary and secondary sources (see #3 and #4 below) in order to demonstrate how they address and inform the topic you've chosen. This will help establish your topic's feasibility and viability for your thesis. In other words for #1 to mean anything, you'll need to be sure to do #3 and #4.

  2. Spell out a question (or two or three) about your chosen topic that you would like to answer in your your thesis. Your question(s) must be evaluative, i.e., of the "how" / "why" variety, and not normative, i.e., of the "should" or "ought" variety. Evaluative questions require you to take and defend a position, to advance a thesis claim (i.e., interpretation / argument), in response to them.

  3. Conduct the research necessary to (a) identify a primary source base or primary source bases and then (b) begin conducting preliminary research into those primary sources. Ultimately, your final paper will depend on having a rich array of primary sources available to address the research question(s) you pose (#2) for your topic (#1). Many good research questions simply cannot be answered because they lack primary sources. Consequently, it's essential that you choose a research topic and question(s) that has a wealth of available and accessible primary sources. Ultimately, the strength of your thesis will be a function of the persuasiveness/forcefulness of the thesis claim you advance in your final 101 in light of the narrowly-focused thoroughness of the predominantly primary evidence you marshal to support your thesis claim.

  4. Familiarize yourself with some of the historiography (secondary) sources about your chosen topic, including the interpretations they advance and primary sources they employ.